UAV Pilots May Get Distinguished Warfare Medal
The Washington Post writes that drone pilots may soon get a medal tailor-made for their uniforms:
[Charles V. Mugno, head of the Army Institute of Heraldry] said most combat decorations require “boots on the ground” in a combat zone, but he noted that “emerging technologies” such as drones and cyber combat missions are now handled by troops far removed from combat.
The Pentagon has not formally endorsed the medal, but Mugno’s institute has completed six alternate designs for commission approval.
The discussion continues an ongoing debate about the “combat status” of persons controlling weapons over Afghanistan while sitting in the US. UAV operators are, for example, held responsible for the UAV’s actions in the warzone under negative circumstances…so why not positive ones?
Still, if they’re going to create a new medal, they might reconsider the name “distinguished warfare.”